Avoid The Appearance Of Evil – VAYESHEV

Vayeshev2

D’VAR TORAH
VAYESHEV – AND HE SETTLED
BERESHIT (GENESIS) 37.1-40.23

Avoid The Appearance Of Evil

• Bereshit / Genesis 37:1 – 40:23
• Amos /Amos 2:6 – 3:8
• Mattityahu / Matthew 1:1-6

Bereshit {39:6} He left all that he had in Yoseph’s (Joseph’s) hand. He did not concern himself with anything, except for the food which he ate. Yoseph was handsome, and well-favored. {39:7} It happened after these things, that his master’s wife cast her eyes on Yoseph; and she said, “Lie with me.”{39:8} But he refused, and said to his master’s wife, “Behold, my master does not know what is with me in the house, and he has put all that he has into my hand. {39:9} He is not greater in this house than I, neither has he kept back anything from me but you, because you are his wife. How then can I do this great wickedness, and chat’at (sin) against G-D?”{39:10} It happened that as she spoke to Yoseph day by day, that he did not listen to her, to lie by her, or to be with her. {39:11} It happened about this time, that he went into the house to do his work, and there were none of the men of the house inside. {39:12} She caught him by his garment, saying, “Lie with me!” He left his garment in her hand, and ran outside. {39:13} It happened, when she saw that he had left his garment in her hand, and had run outside, {39:14} that she called to the men of her house, and spoke to them, saying, “Behold, he has brought in a Hebrew to us to mock us. He came in to me to lie with me, and I cried with a loud voice. {39:15} It happened, when he heard that I lifted up my voice and cried, that he left his garment by me, and ran outside.”
There is so much we can learn from the story of Yoseph. Volumes can be written on it. However, the passages that I have focused in on teach a very important principle. In studying these verses I have taken this principle and have incorporated it into both my personal and professional life. Yoseph, we are aware, was a single man; however, this principle applies to single woman, married men and married woman as well.
Potiphar’s wife had her eyes on Yoseph. He was young, he was handsome and he was a slave. Certainly she thought that she would be able to seduce him without too much effort. Most men would have easily given in to this woman’s advances, but not so with Yoseph, he answered to a higher authority. Is that what got Yoseph into trouble, his not giving in to his boss’s wife? Certainly when we consider the events leading up to accusations she made against him we could come to that conclusion. But was it his running out on Potiphar’s wife that got him into trouble or was that only a symptom of the problem?
Tesolonilim Alef (1Thessalonians) {5:22} Abstain from all appearance of evil.
This verse explains the cause of Yoseph’s problem. He had grown so familiar with being in Potiphar’s home that he became complacent about being there when he was alone in the house with Mrs. Potiphar.
We know from the Scripture passages above that Mrs Potiphar made advances over and over again to Yoseph, so he was certainly aware of her intentions. Why then would he risk being alone with her in the house? Had Yoseph not allowed himself to be alone in the house with this woman he would have not found himself in a compromising position. Granted HaShem works all things out for our good but perhaps two years in prison could have been avoided while still allowing G-d to achieve the final chapter of this story.
And so the principle we can gain from this story and apply to our own lives is; never put yourself into a possibly compromising position by being alone with a woman/man who is not your wife/husband, anywhere. This includes a car! As I said, I have applied this principle to both my personal and professional life and it has served me well. I have even gone further and will never counsel a woman alone in my office. As well I must add that I also avoid being alone with a man I do not know and certainly I avoid being alone with a child. We need to avoid the appearance of evil and we need to protect ourselves from the possible evil designs of other people and HaSatan (Satan).

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Less Than We Deserve – VAYISHLACH

Vayishlach

D’VAR TORAH
VAYISHLACH – AND HE SENT
BERESHIT (GENESIS) 32.4-36.43

Less Than We Deserve

• Bereshit / Genesis 32:4 – 36:43
• Ovadia / Obadiah 1:1-21
• Ivrim / Hebrews 11:11-20

Bereshit {32:24} Ya’acov (Jacob) was left alone, and wrestled with an ish (man) there until the breaking of the day. {32:25} When he saw that he did not prevail against him, he touched the hollow of his thigh, and the hollow of Ya’acov’s thigh was strained, as he wrestled. {32:26} The ish said, “Let me go, for the day breaks.” Ya’acov said, “I will not let you go, unless you bless me.” {32:27} He said to him, “What is your name?” He said, “Ya’acov.” {32:28} He said, “Your name will no longer be called ‘Ya’acov,’ but, ‘Yisrael,’ for you have fought with G-D and with men, and have prevailed.”
As this Parasha opens we read about Ya’acov sending out messengers to his brother Esav with idea of impressing him by his wealth. To me, this is evidence that Ya’acov still feared his brother. Further proof of his fear is revealed, when we read that after finding out that his brother was coming to meet him with four hundred men, he went into panic mode and divided his company into two camps. Subsequently, Ya’acov’s fear causes him to question G-d and the promises He had made to him. Finally, Ya’acov takes matters into his own hands and attempts to bribe his way out of trouble by sending his brother waves of gifts.
It is amazing how debilitating fear can be. It clouds our judgement and causes us to do things we might normally not do. Ya’acov had been running a way all his life; first from his brother, then from his father-in-law and then once again from his brother. I would be tempted to say that Ya’acov may have had a problem with confrontation. Most people who have this problem and prefer to run then to confront. We pick up our commentary where Ya’acov before learning how to confront man had to learn how to confront G-d.
Ya’acov had always wrestled with man and failed. However, his problem was not with man it was with G-d. HaShem had chosen him to be the heir of the promises given to his fathers and if he was going to succeed as the heir he had to learn how to lean on G-d; hence the divine confrontation.
In the opening of this story we are told that Ya’acov wrestled with a man. However, it did not take long for him to realize that his opponent was no mere man; he was wrestling with G-d. Standing his ground and fighting was a totally new experience for Ya’acov, he never stood and fought, he much preferred to run. Not this time, however. Obviously, Ya’acov had enough of running; this time he was going to stand his ground and fight.
For Ya’acov to become the true heir of the promises he needed to take hold of G-d and not let go, he need to stop relying on himself and his own wits and start relying of G-d and that is exactly what happened. Ya’acov refused to let go of G-d until He blessed him. Yes, Ya’acov got his blessing, but more then that he finally stopped running and put his trust in HaShem. As a result of this victory in his life Ya’acov’s name was changed and he was blessed by G-d.
What was Ya’acov’s blessing? He was blessed with prevailing with G-d and man. In other words, whereas before he was a self centered man Ya’acov became a G-d centered man. However, you cannot run from G-d for so many years and expect there to be no consequences.
Bereshit {32:25} When He saw that He did not prevail against him, He touched the hollow of his thigh, and the hollow of Ya’acov’s thigh was strained, as he wrestled.
Ya’acov had to live with this consequence for the rest of his life. It was a constant reminder of his past disobedience.
We would do well to take a lesson from Ya’acov. We can not allow fear to consume us and cloud our judgement. We can not run from confrontation but must learn how to confront and deal with difficult situations in our lives. Most of all if we want to prevail with G-d and man we must cling to HaShem and refuse to let Him go until He blesses us. As with Ya’acov we have a past and as a result consequences. Thankfully HaShem is merciful and always give us less then we deserve.

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Time Flies When You Are In Love

Hashuvah2

D’VAR TORAH

VAYETZE – AND HE WENT OUT

BERESHIT (GENESIS) 28.10-32.3

  • Bereshit / Genesis 28:10-32:2
  • Hoshea / Hosea 3:6-14:10
  • Yochanan / John 1:19-51

 

Bereshit {29:16} Lavan had two daughters. The name of the elder was Leah, and the name of the younger was Rachel. {29:17} Leah’s eyes were weak, but Rachel was beautiful and well favored. {29:18} Ya’akov (Jacob) loved Rachel. He said, “I will serve you seven years for Rachel, your younger daughter.” {29:19} Lavan said, “It is better that I give her to you, than that I should give her to another man. Stay with me.” {29:20} Ya’akov served seven years for Rachel. They seemed to him but a few days, for the love he had for her.

Have you ever noticed that when you love doing something, even if it is hard work, it seems easy? Also when you love your job, the day just seems to fly by. Compare that to a boring job, one that you just can not get into; for a job like that the day just seems to drag on and quitting time can not come fast enough.

My wife and I, as of this writing, have been married one month shy of twenty two years. As with all marriages we have had our challenges but because of the love we have for each other the years seem to have just flown by.

Every week here at Congregation Melech Yisrael, at both our Erev Shabbat and Shabbat services, we recite the liturgical prayer: “V’ahav’ta et Ad-nai Elohecha, b’chal l’vav’ch uv’chal naf’sh’cha uv’chal m’odecha (And you shall love the L-rd your G-d with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your resources). From what we know about how time flies when we love something, we can appreciate that loving HaShem is very significant.

I have been a Believer in Yeshua HaMashiach for more than thirty years and because of my love for HaShem those years seem to have passed like the blink of an eye. This is significant when we consider how important it is for us to stay focused on a walk of righteousness. If it felt like our relationship with the L-rd was dragging, just think how difficult it would be for us to persevere in our walk and in our relationship with Him.

There is yet another thing I would like us to notice from our story of Ya’acov and Rachel. Even though Ya’acov was fooled and disappointed by his father-in-law Laban, he did not give up on his love for Rachel; in stead he gladly worked another seven years for her hand in marriage.

Time and time again I have come across people, Believers, who after being disappointed because their prayers were not answered or because they felt abandoned by G-d, fall away from serving Him or completely backslide into their old life. Sadly, this is only an indication of their lack of true love for HaShem.

I truly hope that this can not be said of you and that your love for HaShem is so strong that no matter what happens in your life your love for Him remains constant and the days and years that you spend with Him just feel like they are flying by.

Mizmor (Psalm) {119:32} I shall run the way of Your commandments, for You will enlarge my heart. {119:33} Teach me, HaShem, the way of Your statutes, and I shall observe it to the end. {119:34} Give me understanding, that I may observe Your Torah and keep it with all my heart. {119:35} Make me walk in the path of Your commandments, for I delight in it. {119:36} Incline my heart to Your testimonies and not to dishonest gain. {119:37} Turn away my eyes from looking at vanity, and revive me in your ways. {119:38} Establish Your Word to Your servant, as that which produces reverence for You.

 

 

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Dan and Melissa David in Concert Nov. 9th!

danmelissaflyers

Dan and Melissa David in Concert Nov. 9th!

 

 

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Hatred Destroys Lives – Toldot

Toldos

D’VAR TORAH

TOLDOT – GENERATIONS

BERESHIT (GENESIS) 25.19-28.9

 

Hatred Destroys Lives

”          Bereshit / Genesis 25:19-28:9

”          Shmuel Alef / 1 Samuel 20:18-42

”          Romim / Romans 9:1-13

 

 

Bereshit {27:41} Esav (Esau) hated Ya’akov (Jacob) because of the blessing with which his ‘ab (father) blessed him. Esav said in his heart, “The days of mourning for my ‘ab are at hand. Then I will kill my brother Ya’akov.” {27:42} The words of Esav, her elder son, were told to Rivkah (Rebecca). She sent and called Ya’akov her younger son, and said to him, “Behold, your brother Esav comforts himself about you by planning to kill you. {27:43} Now therefore, my son, obey my voice. Arise, flee to Lavan, my brother, in Charan. {27:44} Stay with him a few days, until your brother’s fury turns away; {27:45} until your brother’s anger turn away from you, and he forgets what you have done to him. Then I will send, and get you from there. Why should I be bereaved of you both in one day?”

In this story of Esav and Ya’acov we can see the affects of hatred on a person’s life, as well as the affect it has on the life of the hated person.

We are told here that Esav hated Ya’acov. We know that Esav was the father of the Edomites. It was the Edomites who stood by and watched as the Assyrians attack and kill thousands in Yisrael (Israel) and who themselves lay in wait and killed those from Yisrael who were attempting to escape from the Assyrians. Sad when you consider that Esav and Ya’acov were blood brothers. They should have loved and respected each other and that love should have been passed down through the subsequent generations. Instead, because Esav hated Ya’acov, that hate was passed down and even exists between their generations to this very day.

But the affects of the hatred even runs deeper. Esav because of his hatred was estranged from his brother and eventually his family because of the pagan women he married. Eventually Esav left the faith of his forefather Avraham and fell into idolatry. Because deception leads to greater deception, over the centuries, the religion of Islam was born and as a result, the hatred between Jews and Muslims has multiplied.

However, Esav’s hatred did not only affect him and his generations it also affected Ya’acov and his generations. As a result of Esav’s hatred for his brother, Ya’acov had to run for his life. From that time on Ya’acov mistrusted Esav. This mistrust was revealed in Scripture when the two encountered each other while Ya’acov was fleeing from Laban. Ya’acov told Esav he would meet him in Seir but then proceed with his entourage in an opposite direction towards Succoth (Bereshit 33:13ff). So Esav’s hatred affected the life and the decisions Ya’acov made, after being reunited with his brother. Despite the fact that they seemed to have reconciled, Ya’acov still mistrusted his brother. This mistrust has been passed down through the generations of Ya’acov unto this very day.

Mattityahu (Matthew) {5:21} You have heard that it was said by them of old time, “You shall not murder; and whosoever shall murder shall be in danger of the judgment:” {5:22} But I say unto you, “That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment…”

Let this story of Esav and Ya’acov, be a lesson for us all. Our hatred of anyone, will not only affect us and the person we hate but it will also affect both parties’ future generations.

Yochanan (John) {13:34} “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. {13:35} “By this all men will know that you are My talmidim (disciples), if you have love for one another.”

 

 

 

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Testing Will Come- Chayei Sarah

Sara

D’VAR TORAH

CHAYEI SARAH – SARAH LIVED

BERESHIT (GENESIS) 23.1-25.18)

 

 

Testing Will Come

 

 

  • Bereshit / Genesis 23:1-25:18
  • Malachim Alef / 1 Kings 1:1-31
  • Korintim Alef / 1 Corinthians 15:50-57

 

 

Bereshit {24:1} Avraham (Abraham) was old, and well stricken in age. HaShem had blessed Avraham in all things. {24:2} Avraham said to his servant, the elder of his house, who ruled over all that he had, “Please put your hand under my thigh. {24:3} I will make you swear by HaShem, the G-D of heaven and the G-D of the earth, that you shall not take a wife for my ben(son) of the daughters of the Cana’anites, among whom I live. {24:4} But you shall go to my country, and to my relatives, and take a wife for my son Yitzchak (Isaac).”{24:5} The servant said to him, “What if the ishah (woman) is not willing to follow me to this land? Must I bring your son again to the land you came from?”{24:6} Avraham said to him, “Beware that you do not bring my son there again. {24:7} HaShem, the G-D of heaven, who took me from my ‘ab’s (father’s) house, and from the land of my birth, who spoke to me, and who swore to me, saying, ‘To your descendants I will give this land.’ He will send His angel before you, and you shall take a wife for my son from there. {24:8} If the ishah is not willing to follow you, then you shall be clear from this my oath. Only you shall not bring my son there again.”

Without a doubt HaShem blesses us when we are obedient. HaShem told Avraham that he should not allow his son to intermarry with the pagan Canaanites’. So when looking for a wife for his son Yitzchak he made his servant vow that he would not take a wife for him from among the Canaanites’. He made him vow that he would go to relatives from where he was born and take Yitzchak a wife from there. In addition HaShem had told Avraham that he should never go back from where he came. So when asked by his servant what should be done if the girl he chooses will not return with him Avraham stayed faithful to HaShem’s command and had his servant vow never to bring Yitzchak back to that place.

I do not think it was by sheer luck that Avraham’s servant found a girl, had his prayer answered, found out that she was related of his master’s family and that she was willing to go to Yitzchak. HaShem blessed the trip. Let us face it; HaShem blessed those who are obedient.

I agree that it would have been easy for Avraham to resist taking a wife for Yitzchak from among the Canaanites’. They were a pagan society and a cursed nation. HaShem had promised Avraham their land so they were going to eventually be disposed. However, it would have been more difficult for Avraham to resist the second situation. When asked what if the girl his servant found would not return with him, Avraham without hesitation rejected that his son go back to where they came from. He knew that HaShem will be true to his promise so he would not allow his family to be removed from the land he was promised.

Avraham was faithful and because of his faithfulness HaShem blessed him and provided Yitzchak with the perfect wife.

I trust that we are all taking a lesson from this story because many of us second guess HaShem’s commands and at times go against them. I come across this most in the area of employment. When a person joins Congregation Melech Yisrael, having come from a church, most of the time they have a job which require them to work on the Shabbat. Once incorporated into the congregation and they understand the sanctity of the Shabbat, they ask me if they should quit their job. My answer is always for them to first pray and ask HaShem to put it upon their employer’s heart to release you from working on the Shabbat. HaShem knows our heart and if our desire is not to work on the Shabbat He will work it out. I have also come across those from within the congregation who have lost their job and are looking for work. It is very difficult to find employment that does not require you to work on Shabbat, especially for jobs that require shift work. It is easy to turn down prospective employers that require working on Shabbat if you have just started looking for work, however, as the week, and months pass with no prospect of finding a job that does not require having to work on the Shabbat, taking any job becomes a lot more tempting.

Avraham was tested; he made the correct choices; HaShem blessed him for it. We should not think that we are immune from G-d testing us.

Yaacov (James) {1:2} Consider it all joy, my brothers, when you encounter various trials, (1:3} knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. {1:4} And let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

I have seen many people give in and be disobedient to HaShem’s commandments. As a result they suffered for it both physically and spiritually. I have also seen many who suffered, at first, because they were obedient to G-d commandments only in the end to be blessed both physically and spiritually.

My prayer for you is that when your time of testing comes that you will not compromise and that you will remain obedient to HaShem.

 

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Expel All The People!  趕出所有的居民!

D’VAR TORAH

MASEI – 路程

BAMIDBAR (民數記) 33:1-36:13

 

 

Title:                            Expel All The People!  趕出所有的居民!

 

Torah:                          Bamidbar/民數記 33:1-36:13

Haftarah:                     Yirmeyahu/耶利米書 2:4-28; 3:4

Brit Chadasha:                        Mattityahu/馬太福音 24:1-25:6

 

 

民數記 33:50  耶和華在摩押平原約但河邊、耶利哥對面曉諭摩西說: 33:51  「你吩咐以色列人說:你們過約但河進迦南地的時候, 33:52  就要從你們面前趕出那裡所有的居民,毀滅他們一切鏨成的石像和他們一切鑄成的偶像,又拆毀他們一切的邱壇。 3:53  你們要奪那地,住在其中,因我把那地賜給你們為業。33:55  倘若你們不趕出那地的居民,所容留的居民就必作你們眼中的刺,肋下的荊棘,也必在你們所住的地上擾害你們。 33:56  而且我素常有意怎樣待他們,也必照樣待你們。」

哇!似曾相識的感覺!當然我們早已從經文得知以色列人並沒有聽從神的命令趕出迦南地所有的居民,於是那地的居民最終成了他們眼中的刺和肋下的荊棘。而56節的警告也成為事實了。以色列人因為沒有趕出那地的居民,他們混雜在以色列人中,引誘以色列人去拜外邦的偶像,以至後來神對以色列人所作的,就是祂原本要對迦南人作的,將他們逐出以色列地。

面對現實吧,神不會和我們磨蹭!祂的警告我們必須認真聽,祂的指示我們必須服從,否則祂所說的後果必然會發生。爲什麽我們有人會認為學習了神的話語卻不服從祂的命令還能不受懲治,這真是瘋狂!簡直就像喜歡自我毀滅一般。

妥拉(律法書)裡面充滿了神的警告,並且指示我們如何生活才能得著祂的賜福。它同時也清楚列舉了不服從這些命令的後果。任何有半個腦子的人都應該能看見古時以色列的遭遇乃因他們的不順服,並因此知道自己若走同樣的路將會有什麽結局。然而,無數的人仍然繼續走在這條通往毀滅的途徑。

以色列人于1948年重新回到以色列地居住。然而,雖然這次神沒有在他們進入那地之前對他們引用上面的經文,但那並不是說神改變了主意要修改或撤回給他們土地的條件。我們應知道神是昨日今日直到永遠是一樣的,祂不會改變,也不會動搖。1948年神給了以色列人再一次順服祂的機會,1967年同樣,但這兩次以色列人仍然和以前一樣沒有聽從神的警告和指示,不將那地的居民從以色列地消除。因此今天他們必須遭受數千年前他們所受過的不順服後果。那地的居民又再一次成了他們眼中的刺和肋下的荊棘。令人傷痛的是我們已經知道了這故事在不久的將來會如何發展。

撒迦利亞書 13:8  耶和華說:這全地的人,三分之二必剪除而死,三分之一仍必存留。13:9  我要使這三分之一經火,熬煉他們,如熬煉銀子;試煉他們,如試煉金子。他們必求告我的名,我必應允他們。我要說:這是我的子民。他們也要說:耶和華是我們的神。

讚美神,雖然以色列人如此悖逆,起碼這次神會憐憫而不將他們完全趕出那地。然而祂將會把他們帶到近乎滅絕的邊緣(三分之二會死於他們的仇敵之手),到那時,經文這樣說:

馬太福音 23:38  看哪,你們的家成為荒場留給你們。 23:39  我告訴你們,從今以後,你們不得再見我,直等到你們說:『奉主名來的是應當稱頌的。』」

主耶穌啊,快回來救贖以色列脫離他一切憂傷痛苦吧!

 

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Expel All The People! – Masei

Masei

D’VAR TORAH

MASEI – JOURNEYS

BAMIDBAR (NUMBERS) 33:1-36:13

 

 

Torah:                          Bamidbar/Numbers 33:1-36:13

Haftarah:                     Yirmeyahu/Jerimiah 2:4-28; 3:4

Brit Chadasha:                        Mattityahu/Matthew 24:1-25:6

 

 

Bamidbar {33:50} HaShem spoke to Moshe (Moses) in the plains of Mo’av by the Yarden (Jordan), across from Yericho. He said {33:51} to tell the people of Yisrael (Israel), “When you cross the Yarden into the land of Kena’an, {33:52} you are to expel all the people living in the land from in front of you. Destroy all their stone figures, destroy all their metal statues and demolish all their high places. {33:53} Drive out the inhabitants of the land, and live in it, for I have given the land to you to possess. {33:55} But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from in front of you, then those you allow to remain will become like thorns in your eyes and stings in your sides – they will harass you in the land where you are living. {33:56} And in this event, I will do to you what I intended to do to them.”

Wow! What a Deja Vu! We certainly know from Scripture that Yisrael did not listen to HaShem and drive out the inhabitants of the land and that the inhabitants of the land did ultimately become like thorns in their eyes and stings in their sides. The last warning HaShem made in the above passages also came to pass. Yisrael did not only not drive out the inhabitants of the land which caused them to become thorns in their side and pricks in their eyes but because they remained in the land the inhabitants also enticed Yisrael to worship their god, which as we know resulted in HaShem doing to them as He intended to do totheKena’anim; He drove Yisrael out of the land.

Face the facts, HaShem does not mess around! His warning must be obeyed and His instructions must be adhered to or the consequences He warned about will take place. Why any of us think that we can study the Word of G-d and then not follow what He has said and still think we can get away with it is insane! It’s like someone who takes pleasure in self inflicting pain.

The Torah is replete with warnings from HaShem instructing us how to conduct our lives so as to receive His blessings. It also clearly enumerates the consequences of not following those instructions. Anyone with half a brain should be able to see what took place with ancient Yisrael because of their disobedience and easily conclude what will happen to them if they continue down the same path as them. Yet, scores of people still do continue down that path of self-destruction.

Bnei Yisrael reoccupied Eretz (the land of) Yisrael in 1948. However, just because HaShem did not repeat the verses quoted above to them before they entered does not mean that He had changed His mind concerning the conditions for giving them the land. After all HaShem is the same yesterday today and forever; He does not change, He does not waver. In 1948 HaShem gave them a second chance to be obedient and He did it again in 1967 yet both times, once again, bnei (the children of) Yisrael did not heed G-d’s warnings, they did not listen to His instructions and did not eliminate the inhabitants from the land. So today they are suffering the same consequences they suffered for their disobedience thousands of years ago. The inhabitants of the land have once again become like thorns in their eyes and stings in their sides. The sad part is we know how the story is going to play out in the future.

Zachariah {13:8} In time, throughout that land,” says HaShem, “two-thirds of those in it will be destroyed – they will die, but one-third will remain. {13:9} That third part I will bring through the fire; I will refine them as silver is refined, I will test them as gold is tested. They will call on My Name, and I will answer them. I will say, ‘This is My people’ and they will say, ‘HaShem is my G-d.’”

Baruch HaShem (Blessed is His Name) as bad as it is going to be for bnei Yisrael at least this time HaShem will be merciful and not drive them completely from the land. He will however, bring them to the brink of destruction (two-thirds will be killed at the hand of their enemy), at which point Scripture says:

Uri/Luke: 3:35} Behold, your house is left unto you desolate: and truly I say unto you , you shall not see Me until the time come when you shall say, Baruch Haba b’Shem Ad-nai (Blessed is He that comes in the name of the L-rd.)  

Come quickly L-rd Yeshua and redeem bnei Yisrael from all her troubles.

 

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MP3: Follow the Leader

MP3 Sermon Title: Follow the Leader Speaker: Rabbi Yehezqel Date: 5774 June 2014 * Messianic Jewish Teachings Podcasts (MP3s). Teaching the Jewish Perspective on the holy Scriptures. Invite everyone you know to listen in with you! To listen to an audio podcast, mouse over the title and click Play Now, Play in Popup or Download.

 

Download (PDF, 138KB)

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MP3: G-d Shall Supply

MP3 Sermon Title: G-d Shall Supply Speaker: Rabbi Farber Date: 5774 June 2014 * Messianic Jewish Teachings Podcasts (MP3s). Teaching the Jewish Perspective on the holy Scriptures. Invite everyone you know to listen in with you! To listen to an audio podcast, mouse over the title and click Play Now, Play in Popup or Download.

 

Download (PDF, 80KB)

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MP3: When You are Tempted

MP3 Sermon Title: When you are tempted Speaker: Rabbi Farber Date: 5774 June 2014 * Messianic Jewish Teachings Podcasts (MP3s). Teaching the Jewish Perspective on the holy Scriptures. Invite everyone you know to listen in with you! To listen to an audio podcast, mouse over the title and click Play Now, Play in Popup or Download.

 

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Vaders raak betrokke! – Matot

D’Var Torah

Stamme – Matot

Vaders raak betrokke!

 

Torah: Númeri / Bamidbar 31:1 – 42

Haftara: Jeremía / Yirmeyahu 1:1 – 2:3

Brit Chadasha: Matthéüs / Mattityahu 23:1 – 39

 

Númeri / Bamidbar {30:1} “En Moses het met die stamhoofde van die kinders van Israel gespreek en gesê: Dit is die saak wat die HERE beveel het: {30:2}  As iemand aan die HERE ‘n gelofte doen of ‘n eed sweer waardeur hy homself verbind om hom van iets te onthou, moet hy sy woord nie breek nie; hy moet handel volgens alles wat uit sy mond uitgaan. {30:3}  Maar as ‘n vrou aan die HERE ‘n gelofte doen of haarself verbind om haar te onthou, terwyl sy in haar vader se huis is in haar jeug, {30:4}  en haar vader van haar gelofte hoor of van die onthouding waartoe sy haarself verbind het, en haar vader swyg teenoor haar, dan sal al haar geloftes van krag wees, en elke onthouding waartoe sy haarself verbind het, sal van krag wees. ”.

 

Dit blyk ‘n redelike voor-die-hand-liggende Skrifgedeelte te wees en so is dit ook. Indien ons dit egter ietwat van nader beskou, is daar ‘n baie belangrike boodskap aan vaders en hoofde van huishoudings hierin vervat. Wat God hier sê, is dat vaders wat hoofde van huishoudings is altyd pro-aktief in die lewens van hulle kinders moet optree, want al te dikwels laat ouers hulle kinders aan hulle eie genade oor. Hulle voer dan die verskoning aan dat hulle hul kinders vertrou en wil hulle vermoëns gevolglik nie aan bande lê om eerlike, redelike en weldeurdagte besluite op hulle eie te neem nie. Die feit is egter dat alhoewel dit die indruk van goeie ouerskap mag skep – want ons wil tog ons kinders vertrou – dit beslis nie Bybels is nie. God vereis dat vaders as hoofde van hulle huishoudings, werklik betrokke moet wees by die lewens van hulle kinders. Dit behels dus dat hulle kennis behoort te dra van wie hulle kinders se vriende is, met wie hulle gesels, wie hulle kontakte op “Facebook” en elke ander vorm van sosiale media is. Indien julle as ouers nalaat om dit te doen, versuim julle jul plig om ooreenkomstig die gebooie (mitzvah) te sorg dat julle kinders hulle geloftes nakom. Dit is feitlik seker dat julle kinders nie vrywillig sodanige inligting aan hulle vaders sal verstrek nie.

 

‘n Verdere ongelukkige feit is dat die vader sy verantwoordelikheid om die kinders te moniteer, aan die moeder oorlaat. Ook dit is on-Bybels en veroorsaak ‘n onnatuurlike huishouding waar die moeder – in plaas van die vader – die gesagsrol moet handhaaf. Vaders, indien julle nalaat om aktief betrokke te raak by die lewens van julle kinders, soos wat God hier aan ons verduidelik, sal alles wat húlle doen en sê geld. Ingeval hulle dus ‘n swak –of verkeerde besluit geneem het, sal dit ‘n vernietigende uitwerking op sowel die kinders se lewens as die hele gesin hê.

 

Wanneer ek vaders al by geleentheid berispe het oor hulle gebrek aan ouerlike toesig, haal hulle feitlik altyd die volgende Skrifgedeelte aan om hulleself te regverdig dat hulle nie oordrewe betrokke geraak het by die lewens van hulle inders nie:

 

Kolossense / Kolosim {3:21} “Vaders, moenie julle kinders terg nie, sodat hulle nie moedeloos word nie. ”.

 

Hierdie gedeelte word natuurlik geheel-en-al buite verband deur hulle aangehaal. Indien ons egter die verse wat hierdie teksvers voorafgaan, lees, kan ons bepaal wat Paulus (Shaul) in gedagte gehad het toe hy hierdie woorde aan die Kolossense gerig het:

 

Kolossense / Kolosim {3:16} “Laat die woord van Christus ryklik in julle woon in alle wysheid. Leer en vermaan mekaar met psalms en lofsange en geestelike liedere, en sing in julle hart met dankbaarheid tot eer van die Here. {3:17}  En wat julle ook al doen in woord of in daad, doen alles in die Naam van die Here Jesus en dank God die Vader deur Hom.”.

 

Gelei deur hierdie aanvangsverse as ons gids, sê Paulus vir die vaders dat, wanneer hulle met hulle kinders verkeer, hulle vir hulle psalms, lofsange en geestelike liedere moet sing, sodat aan hulle raad gegee behoort te word in alle wysheid en alles wat hulle doen, gedoen behoort te word in die naam van die Here Jesus, met danksegging aan God die Vader. Indien hulle egter enigiets anders as dit doen, sou hulle die kinders terg sodat hulle moedeloos word en wegdraai van God en Sy toorn op hulle laat neerkom. Vaders, raak betrokke!

 

Congregation Melech Yisraelalle regte voorbehou

 

 

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做父親的,要參與!-Matot

D’VAR TORAH

MATOT – 支派

BAMIDBAR (民數記) 30:1-32:42

 

Title:                            Fathers Get Involved 做父親的,要參與!

Torah:                          Bamidbar/民數記 31:1-42

Haftarah:                     Yirmeyahu/耶利米書 1:1-2:3

Brit Chadasha:                        Mattityahu/馬太福音 23:1-39

 

民數記 30:1  摩西曉諭以色列各支派的首領說:「耶和華所吩咐的乃是這樣: 30:2  人若向耶和華許願或起誓,要約束自己,就不可食言,必要按口中所出的一切話行。 30:3  女子年幼、還在父家的時候,若向耶和華許願,要約束自己, 30:4  他父親也聽見他所許的願並約束自己的話,卻向他默默不言,他所許的願並約束自己的話就都要為定。

這段經文在字面和意義上都是簡單而直截了當的。然而我們若往深處鑽研就會發現這裡有一個很重要的信息是給作為一家之主的父親角色。神在這裡說的是父親們既為家庭的領袖,必須更加積極的參與兒女們的生活。太多時候父母對孩子們的事袖手旁觀。他們的藉口是信任自己的孩子們,不想干涉他們以至限制他們為自己做出誠懇及正確決定的能力。這雖然聽起來好像很好-誰不想做信任子女的父母-但事實上卻是不符合聖經教導的。神要身為一家之主的父親主動而且積極地參與兒女們的生活。這包括他們應該知道孩子們和什麽人來往,和什麽人交談,涉及哪些社交媒體,以及他們的聯絡對象是些什麽人。假如你作為一個父親卻沒有做到以上這一切,你就是沒有遵守這條認可孩子誓約的誡命,因為可想而知,大多數的孩子們都不會主動向父親報告各樣關於自己的消息。

另一個可歎的事實是,多數做父親的把監管兒女的責任交給做母親的。這也是不符合聖經原則,並且女人取代男人當家,一個家變成上下顛倒。父親們,如果你們不積極參與兒女們的生活,神在這裡告訴我們,他們所做所說的一切都被你們認可。假若他們做了錯誤的決定,那不但可能摧毀孩子的生命,就連整個家庭也會連帶的受到極大的影響。

每當我向父親們表示不認同他們對兒女的缺乏監督,他們總是拿出以下的經節回答我,並且用來做不參與兒女生活的辯解:

歌羅西書 3:21  你們作父親的,不要惹兒女的氣,恐怕他們失了志氣。

當然,這是斷章取義。如果我們看看這節之前的經文,就可明白保羅寫給歌羅西人的這段經文是在說什麼:

歌羅西書 3:16  當用各樣的智慧,把基督的道理豐豐富富的存在心裡,(或作:當把基督的道理豐豐富富的存在心裡,以各樣的智慧),用詩章、頌詞、靈歌,彼此教導,互相勸戒,心被恩感,歌頌神。 3:17  無論做什麼,或說話或行事,都要奉主耶穌的名,藉著他感謝父神。

根據本文開始的經文為原則,保羅是在告訴父親們,對待兒女的方法,應當向他們誦讀和吟唱詩章靈歌,用智慧輔導他們,奉主耶穌的名做每一件事,並且藉著祂感謝父神。如果父親們不做這些而用其他的法子,就會惹怒兒女們,而令他們灰心喪志離開神,以至神的憤怒臨到他們。做父親的,要參與!

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Бащи, бъдете активни! – Matot

Д’ВАР ТОРА

МАТОТ – ПЛЕМЕНА

Б’МИДБАР (ЧИСЛА) 30:1-32:42

 

Бащи, бъдете активни!

 

Тора:                           Б’Мидбар / Числа 31:1-42

Афтара:                      Йермиаху/ Еремия 1:1-2:3

Нов Завет:                  Матитяху/ Матей 23:1-39

 

Б’Мидбар (Числа){30:1} Така също Моисей говори на началниците от племената на израилтяните, казвайки: Ето що заповяда Господ: {30:2} Когато някой мъж направи обрек Господу, или се закълне с клетва та обвързва душата си със задължение, нека не наруши думата си, но нека извърши, според всичко що е излязло из устата му. {30:3} Тоже, ако някоя жена направи обрек Господу, и обвърже себе си със задължение, в младостта си, в бащиния си дом, {30:4} и баща й чуе обрека й и задължението, с което е обвързала душата си, и баща й не й каже нищо, тогава всичките й обреци си остават в сила, и всяко нейно задължение, с което е обвързала душата си, си остава в сила.

 

Може да ви се стори, че този пасаж се разбира от само себе си и наистина е така. Но, ако се задълбочим малко в текста, ще видим едно много важно послание за бащите и главите на семейства. Това, което Бог ни казва тук, е, че бащите, които са глави на семейства, трябва да са активни в живота на децата си. Много родители често оставят децата си на самотек. Те използват извинението, че вярват на децата си и не искат да попречат на способността им да вземат честни, разумни и трезви решения сами. Но истината се, че дори и да звучи добре, че вярваме на децата си, това определено не е библейски подход. Бог иска бащите, които са глави на семейства, да участват активно в живота на децата си. Това означава, че те трябва да познават приятелите на децата си, хората, с които говорят, контактите им във Фейсбук и т.н. Ако вие като родител не правите това, тогава не изпълнявате заповедта за потвърждаване на обреците на децата ви. Със сигурност повечето деца не биха дали информация на родителите си доброволно.

Друг тъжен факт е това, че бащите често прехвърлят отговорността по контрола върху децата на майката. Това също е небиблейско и обръща семейството с главата надолу и жената поема ролята на мъжа. Бащи, ако не сте активни в живота на децата си, според пасажа, който прочетохме, всичко, което децата ви правят или казват си остава и те са обвързани с него. Затова, ако те вземат погрешно решение, то ще се отрази не само върху живота на детето, но и върху цялото семейство.

 

Когато понякога съм предизвиквал бащи за липсата на родителски контрол, те почти винаги ми цитират следния стих, като го използват като извинение за това, че не участват активно в живота на децата си:

Колосяни{3:21} Бащи, не дразнете децата си, за да не се обезсърчават.

Разбира се, така цитиран този стих е извън контекст. Ако разгледаме стиховете преди това, можем да разберем какво е имал предвид ап. Павел, когато е писал това на колосяните:

Колосяни {3:16}  Христовото слово да се вселява във вас богато; с пълна мъдрост учете се и увещавайте се с псалми и химни и духовни песни, като пеете на Бога с благодат в сърцата си. {3:17} и каквото и да вършите, словом или делом, вършете всичко в името на Господа Исуса, благодарящи чрез Него на Бога Отца.

 

От тези стихове става ясно, че Павел казва на бащите в общуването с децата си да използват псалми, химни и духовни песни; да ги съветват с мъдрост и че всичко, което правят, трябва да се прави в името на Господ Йешуа с благодарност към Бога Отца. Ако правят нещо различно от това, те дразнят децата си, които ще се обезсърчат и ще обърнат гръб на Бога и Той ще излее гнева Си върху тях. Бащи, бъдете активни!

 

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Fathers get Involved – Matot

Matot

D’VAR TORAH

MATOT – TRIBES

BAMIDBAR (NUMBERS) 30:1-32:42

 

Torah:                          Bamidbar/Numbers 31:1-42

Haftarah:                     Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 1:1-2:3

Brit Chadasha:                        Mattityahu/Matthew 23:1-39

 

Bamidbar {30:1} Then Moshe (Moshe) spoke to the heads of the tribes of the people of Yisrael (Israel). He said, “Here is what HaShem has ordered: {30:2} when a man makes a vow to HaShem or formally obligates himself by swearing an oath, he is not to break his word but is to do everything he said he would do. {30:3}”When a woman makes a vow to HaShem, formally obligating herself, while she is a minor living in her father’s house; {30:4} then, if her father has heard what she vowed or obligated herself to do and holds his peace, then all her vows remain binding – every obligation she has bound herself to will stand. 

This may seem like a pretty straight forward passage of Scripture and it is. However, if we dig a little deeper there is a very important message here for fathers and heads of households. What HaShem is saying here is that fathers, who are the head of their households, need to be proactive and involved in the lives of their children. All too often parents leave their children to themselves. They use the excuse that they trust their child and do not want to cramp their ability to make, honest, reasonable and sound decisions on their own. But that fact is, although this may sound like good parenting, after all we all want to trust our kids, it is definitely not biblical. HaShem wants fathers, who are heads of their households, to be actively involved in their children’s lives. This means that they should know who their child’s friends are, who they are speaking to, who their contacts are on Face Book and on every other form of social media. If, as a parent you are not doing this, then you are not fulfilling the mitzvah (commandment) of ratifying your child’s vows. Certainly most children will not volunteer information to their fathers and if they do not ask and investigated what is going on in their life they will not tell you and if they do tell it may nog be the whole truth.

Another sad fact is, often the father relegates the responsibility of monitoring the children to the mother. This too is not biblical and makes for an upside-down household where the woman takes the lead role instead of the man. Fathers, if you do not get actively involved in the lives of your children then what we are being told here by HaShem is that everything they do and say will stand. Therefore, if they made a bad or wrong decision it will not only have devastating implications on the child`s life but it will also affect the entire family.

Many times when I have challenged fathers for their lack of parental supervision they almost always recite the following Scripture to me, using it as their justification for not overly getting involved in their children’s lives:

Kolosim (Colossians) {3:21} Fathers, do not exasperate your children, so that they will not lose heart.

Of course they have taken this passage of Scripture totally out of context. If we look at the verses prior to this verse we can determine what Shaul (Paul) had in mind when he penned these words to the Kolosim:

Kolosim {3:16}  let the Word of Mashiach (Messiah), in all its richness, live in you, as you teach and counsel each other in all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude to G-d in your hearts. {3:17} That is, everything you do or say, do in the name of the L-rd Yeshua, giving thanks through Him to G-d the Father.

Using these opening verses as our guide, Shaul is telling fathers that they should, in dealing with their children, sing psalms hymns and spiritual songs to them; that they should counsel them in all wisdom and that everything they do needs to be done in the name of the L-rd Yeshua, giving thanks to G-d the Father. If they do anything other than this they would exasperate their children, their children will lose heart and turn away from G-d and that would bring His wrath down upon them. Fathers get involved!

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Respectful and Temperate – Pinchas

Pinchas

D’VAR TORAH

PINCHAS – PHINEAS

BAMIDBAR (NUMBERS) 25:10-29:40

 

 

Torah:                          Bamidbar 25:10-29:40

Haftarah:                     Mikhah/Micah 5:6-6:8

Brit Chadasha:                        Mordechai/Mark 11:12-26

 

 

Bamidbar {28:1} HaShem said to Moshe (Moses), {28:2} “Give an order to the people of Yisrael (Israel). Tell them, ‘You are to take care to offer Me at the proper time the food presented to Me as offerings made by fire, providing a fragrant aroma for Me.’ {28:3} Tell them, ‘This is the offering made by fire that you are to bring to HaShem: male lambs in their first year and without defect, two daily as a regular burnt offering. {28:4} Offer the one lamb in the morning and the other lamb at dusk, {28:5} along with two quarts of fine flour as a grain offering, mixed with one quart of oil from pressed olives. {28:6} It is the regular burnt offering, the same as was offered on Mount Sinai to give a fragrant aroma, an offering made by fire for HaShem. {28:7} Its drink offering is to be one-quarter hin for one lamb; in the Holy Place you are to pour out a drink offering of intoxicating liquor to HaShem. {28:8} The other lamb you are to present at dusk; present it with the same kind of grain offering and drink offering as in the morning; it is an offering made by fire, with a fragrant aroma for HaShem. {28:9} “‘On Shabbat offer two male lambs in their first year and without defect, with one gallon of fine flour as a grain offering, mixed with olive oil, and its drink offering.

As I read through the list of required offerings I was amazed at how many animals and how much grain and oil they needed to offer and how seriously HaShem took the offerings. Everything had to be done in a precise order, exactly as prescribed by HaShem. The exact proper offering had to be offered at the precise time or season depending on which Feast day was being celebrated.  How they managed to keep track of everything without the use of computers, as we have today, astounds me? It was not like they could make a mistake once in a while. A mess-up could have meant death for the offer or the priest that was doing the offering.

Then I thought. If like Scripture says, HaShem is the same yesterday, today and forever, it must be an abomination to Him to see how people treat and approach Him today. I cannot but think that G-d must be extremely longsuffering. From what I have seen of non-denominational churches, both those that I have visited and those that I have had the opportunity to view on the internet and television, hardly anything is done orderly or respectfully anymore. Sadly the same is true for many of the Messianic Congregations as well. It also amazes me how carelessly Believers treat the blood of Yeshua and the Ruach HaKodesh. I am also dumbfounded when I hear Believers binding HaSatan and consign him to hell as if they have any power to do that.

Y’hudah (Jude) {1:9} But Michael the archangel, when he disputed with the devil and argued about the body of Moshe, did not dare pronounce against him a railing judgment, but said, “The L-rd rebuke you!”

HaShem has allowed HaSatan liberty over the world and the world’s system and only He can bind him and only He will send him to hell. We fool ourselves if we think we can send the devil to hell. We can be sure, however, when his time comes HaShem will send him and his demons there.

Did you notice what was required to offer in verse 7?

            {28:7} Its drink offering is to be one-quarter hin for one lamb; in the Holy Place you are to pour out a drink offering of intoxicating liquor to HaShem.

Intoxicating liquor? Does this mean that they had stills in those day for the production of hard liquor? Obviously they did! You can also be sure that if they were producing hard intoxicating liquor during biblical times, they were drinking it as well. Allow me to remind you that there is no prohibition against drinking wine or hard liquor. The only prohibition is against getting drunk. Shlomo Melech (King Solomon) said:

Mishlei (Proverbs) {23:30} Those who linger long over wine, Those who go to taste mixed wine. {23:31} Do not look on the wine when it is red, When it sparkles in the cup, When it goes down smoothly ; {23:32} At the last it bites like a serpent And stings like a viper. {23:33} Your eyes will see strange things And your mind will utter perverse things. {23:34} And you will be like one who lies down in the middle of the sea, Or like one who lies down on the top of a mast.

            Learn to be respectful and orderly when worshiping HaShem and learn to be temperate in your consumption of intoxicating liquor.

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